Today, May 17, is World Hypertension Day. The theme this year is Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer.
World Hypertension Day aims to help combat low awareness rates, especially in low- and middle-income areas, and promote a greater understanding of accurate blood pressure measurement methods.
This year's theme is focused on awareness and accurate measurement because those are two areas that need attention. Hypertension is a major cause of premature death. Approximately 1.13 billion people worldwide suffer from hypertension. Two-thirds of these people live in low- and middle-income countries. Fewer than 1 in 5 people with hypertension have the problem under control. Less than 50% of adults with hypertension worldwide were aware that they had high blood pressure. In most regions of the world, awareness is very low - as low as 10%.
That is why the World Hypertension League, in collaboration with the International Society of Hypertension and the World Health Organization, are committed to increasing awareness of hypertension through two key strategies:
- Establishing high-capacity community screening programmes to improve recognition of high blood pressure in those who are at risk.
- Promoting routine measurement of blood pressure by healthcare professionals during all clinical encounters.
The United Nations has a goal of reduced uncontrolled hypertension by 25% by 2025. This can only be achieved through improved diagnosis. Enhanced global blood pressure screenings through activities of the World Hypertension Day can help achieve this goal.
The World Hypertension League has also developed a Train the Trainer module for establishing an evidence-based blood pressure screening site. Presentations and YouTube videos are also available. The World Hypertension League is also encouraging the use of automated blood pressure devices for more accurate readings.
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